I got another sponge started on Saturday night and last night pulled this out of the oven.
I am loving how easily this is working for me. Fingers crossed.
Here is a quick run-down of what I am doing adapted from River Cottage Sourdough. (These instructions are probably just as much for myself in case I forget.)
The night before, start the sponge with
- 100g starter (the original recipe says 100ml)
- 250g bread flour
- 300ml warm water
Mix this together to form a paste and leave covered with a cloth overnight.
In the morning, pour sponge, 300g bread flour, 10g salt and a slurp of olive oil into the bread maker. I set this on the dough cycle for about 15 minutes to do the kneading. Have second cup of tea for the day. (Very important step.)
Place the dough in oiled bowl and leave for quite a few hours until doubled in size. The time will vary according to the dough and the temperature.
Take the dough out and place on a floured bench to very gently knock down and shape. Place loaf in tin/banneton to rise for the second time. This will take a couple of hours.
Preheat oven to 250 C.
Spray loaf and inside oven with a little water. Place dough in the hot over for 10 - 15 minutes. Turn oven down to 200 C and continue cooking for 25 - 35 minutes depending on type of loaf. Spray inside oven again with water.
I have been really impressed with how this has worked (twice!) and following this method, I really think that sourdough will fit into our lifestyle as it can be left during the day to do its thing.
(Thanks cityhippyfarmgirl for all of your help and encouragement to get this up and running.)